Gregory Johnsen, a former Fulbright Fellow in Yemen, is currently a Ph.D. candidate in Near Eastern Studies at Princeton University. Johnsen has written for a variety of publications on Yemen including, among others, Foreign Policy, The American Interest, The Independent, The Boston Globe, and The National. He is the co-founder of Waq al-Waq: Islam and Insurgency in Yemen Blog. In 2009, he was a member of the USAID's conflict assessment team for Yemen.
Well this is probably more of an insight into my social life than most would like, but the new issue of Sada al-Malahim (The Echo of Battles not the Glorious Epics or whatever other translations I've seen) is out (almost right on schedule - I told one friend this past week it should be out on Sunday, and here it is.) But since it is late on a Saturday night, well, now early on a Sunday morning, I'm off to bed.
I'm sure there will be much more over the coming days on the contents (this issue is a bit thicker than previous ones).
A couple of initial notes - I can't go to be without at least giving it a quick once-over. The first article by Nasir al-Wahayshi is the text of his audio message from last month, which I discussed in depth, even indulging in my etymological whims. The fatawa section looks of great interest as does the piece by Said Ali al-Shihri.
Another former Guantanamo detainee, Ibrahim al-Rubaysh, is now confirmed to be in Yemen and writing for Sada al-Malahim.
And if there were still any lingering doubts about the veracity of al-Wahayshi's interview in January, Sada al-Malahim confirms that the interview was legitimate. There are also many more letters from readers in this issue, which should be a cause for concern. There is a new e-mail address, which probably means that the old website that used to host Sada al-Malahim on maktoobblog.com is now defunct.
There is also another list of prisoners printed, missing from the list is Ibrahim al-Muqri, who was released by the Yemeni government last month.
The magazine looks better put together than previous issues, which have been increasingly sophisticated since July 2008. The organization also appears to be growing stronger, another worrying development, particularly when combined with other news coming out of Yemen.
There are still many unanswered questions about al-Awfi and about the recent suicide attacks, but I have only skimmed the journal tonight, so we'll have to wait for answers on those, although it doesn't appear that we will get anything on the latter at least from this issue.
Update: Ahh, and the martyr biography is of Ahmad 'Amr al-Mushjari, the suicide bomber who attacked the Central Security Compound back in July 2008. I hope the fact that al-Mushjari appeared next to Hamza al-Qu'ayti in a video posted immediately after the attack, will put to rest the idiotic claims that some made last year about some sort of a split between Nasir al-Wahayshi and Hamza al-Qu'ayti. I believe I have proven this a number of times over in articles for Jane's and the CTC Sentinel, but from time to time I hear the same lines repeated so here is another piece of evidence for the side of no-split. This isn't to say that there weren't disagreements or that al-Qu'ayti didn't have a certain degree of operational independence, just that there wasn't a split.
Ok, and now, I'm off to bed.
Both schizophrenics and people with a common personality type share similar brain patterns.
- A new study shows that people with a common personality type share brain activity with patients diagnosed with schizophrenia.
- The study gives insight into how the brain activity associated with mental illnesses relates to brain activity in healthy individuals.
- This finding not only improves our understanding of how the brain works but may one day be applied to treatments.
It's a development that could one day lead to much better treatments for osteoporosis, joint damage, and bone fractures.
- Scientists have isolated skeletal stem cells in adult and fetal bones for the first time.
- These cells could one day help treat damaged bone and cartilage.
- The team was able to grow skeletal stem cells from cells found within liposuctioned fat.
Gut bacteria play an important role in how you feel and think and how well your body fights off disease. New research shows that exercise can give your gut bacteria a boost.
- Two studies from the University of Illinois show that gut bacteria can be changed by exercise alone.
- Our understanding of how gut bacteria impacts our overall health is an emerging field, and this research sheds light on the many different ways exercise affects your body.
- Exercising to improve your gut bacteria will prevent diseases and encourage brain health.
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